IN MEMORY OF
Leroy A. Johns Sr.
Leroy A. Johns Sr. of Overland Park, KS passed away on March 29, 2022, at 4:25 p.m. at 90 years of age. He was surrounded by his family as God welcomed him to Heaven. A memorial service for Leroy will be held on May 7th, 2022 11:00 a.m. at the Church of the Resurrection, Wesley Chapel, Leawood, KS. Burial will be in the Ft. Leavenworth Military Cemetery, Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas at a later date.
Leroy was born the son of Paris and Beatrice Ellen (King) Johns on November 12th, 1931 in Port Chester, New York. He had a brother and six sisters, William Paris (Duke), Hattie, Vera, Gloria, Cecilia, Bessie, and Lenore. As he grew up in Port Chester, NY. and attended Port Chester High School he developed a passion for photography.
Leroy joined the United States Air Force in 1950 where he honed his skills in the area of photography and he served for four (4) years while advancing to the rank of Staff SGT. Then transitioned to the Air National Guard as a Tech SGT from 1954 to 1958 in Albuquerque, New Mexico at Kirtland Air Force Base. After leaving the military in 1958 with a rank of Master SGT he continued working at Kirtland Airforce Base as a civil service employee.
During Christmas of 1954 he met Bonjean Edwards and it was love at first sight. They were joined in marriage on September 4th, 1955. In 1959 they added to their family with the birth of their first son Leroy Jr and in 1960 their second son Michael was born.
During his civil service he worked as a Research Photo Technician in the weapons labs on Kirtland Air Force Base. His specialty was high speed motion picture where he recorded high energy experiments performed by Physicist. As his family was growing, he continued working at the base as a civil service employee until 1967.
In 1967 their daughter Sharon was born. During this time Leroy left the civil service and began his journey with Eastman Kodak, moving the family to Somerset, New Jersey while working out of New York City. His transition to Eastman Kodak allowed him to demonstrate his many talents in the areas of marketing, photography, sales, and management. He ascended the corporate ladder rapidly with his ability to communicate, analyze and solve any situation. He took on assignments in Rochester, NY, San Francisco, Chicago, Miami, and Kansas City, KS. Leroy managed many marketing campaigns, which included the Kansas City Chiefs, Miami Dolphins, and the Chicago Bears. After 25 years with Eastman Kodak Leroy retired in 1992.
Leroy continued his love for photography by opening his own photography lab. In 1992 LeBon
Photo was opened. The name LeBon was a combination of Leroy and his devoted wife Bonnie. Michael joined him on this journey of entrepreneurship, helping run the photo mini-lab and commercial studio. When a customer came to LeBon Photo, Leroy never just handed over your pictures without sharing his knowledge of photography, through trainings and sidebars at the lab window to help each of his customers hone their skills as a photographers.
During his entire life, Leroy was the ultimate salesman. If he was awake he was selling. The only thing second to that was his thirst for knowledge. If he didn’t know something it didn’t take long before he went from the student to teacher. The subject didn’t matter, it could have been sports, or the newest marketing idea to sell the newest widget he invented or dreamed up. His enthusiasm was second to none.
Throughout his career he took his family on a journey from border to border and coast to coast. During these travels one thing he did for his family was make them a part of the community from day one finding churches, schools, neighbors and teaching his children about the history and culture that surrounded each community. Leroy and Bonnie throughout this journey taught their kids about family, faith, hard work, and discipline that helped to mold them into the people that he was so very proud of.
Throughout his life he sang in many church choirs across the United States, he performed in musicals such as Westside Story, Guys and Dolls, H.M.S. Pinafore in Albuquerque, NM, and a Barbershop Quartet in St. Charles, IL. He was a member of Church of the Resurrection of Leawood, KS (COR) and sang in the choir until he became ill.
He is survived by his wife Bonjean (Bonnie), sons Leroy Jr. (Fawn), Petaluma, CA; and Michael, Overland Park, KS; daughter Sharon Colbert, Kansas City, MO; Grandchildren - Alexandria C. Johns, Everett, Washington; Marika D. Harris, Albuquerque, NM; Durrell A. Johns, Petaluma, CA; Deanna M. Pedrick (Steven), Maricopa, AZ; Drayden M. Colbert, Kansas City, MO. Great Grandchild – Richard C. Pedrick, Maricopa, AZ.; Sister – Lenore Johns, Port Chester, NY; Sister in-laws – Laurine Jones, Denver, CO; Phyllis Lang (Charles), Albuquerque, NM, and Fannie Edwards Duke, Beloit, WI; and over 200 nieces and nephews.
He worked tirelessly all his life and one thing Leroy would always say before he went to sleep is,
“Wake me up in an hour, I have a lot of work to do”.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to KC Hospice House, www.kchospice.org in Memory of Leroy A. Johns Sr.
Kansas City Hospice House
12000 Wornall Rd., Kansas City MO 64145